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Blog — "Baltimore"

The Weekend of Jet Engines

Heidi Shenk "Baltimore"

This past weekend was full of jet engines. Actually, it was full of jet engines Thursday and Friday too. The Blue Angels were in town for the Sailabration and lucky for us we got to enjoy their show from the roof top deck. In order to get enough momentum for their tricks down by the water, they used the air space directly above us as their flight path. Something about the proximity of the planes and their maneuvers were completely mesmerizing.

On Saturday, we had a few friends over to catch them in action while avoiding the crowds of the harbor. Sunday, Andrew and I couldn't help but watch the whole performance again. All said and done, they performed tricks and flew about the city for nearly an hour before disappearing back into the horizon.

It was all very fun while it lasted, but yesterday I was finally able to enjoy a quiet, peaceful, jet engine free day again. And that, my friends, was pretty fabulous too. :)

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Tall Ships at Night

Heidi Shenk "Baltimore"

Last Thursday, while walking back from the Orioles game, we meandered through the Inner Harbor to catch some of the tall ships that had arrived for the Sailabration. I feel lucky to have had the chance to see them at night as they were beautifully lit up and the reflections on the water were just as fantastic.

This was also the first time I had the chance to try and capture some shots of the harbor at night. This quick detour has inspired me to take the tripod down to the harbor some night this summer to get much better results.

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A Night at the Ballpark

Heidi Shenk "Baltimore" "camden yards" "orioles"

After a pretty eventful afternoon on my roof deck yesterday, I headed downtown for a baseball game. The Pirates were in town so I wanted to be sure to catch at least one of the games in the series. My dad's side of the family is from Pennsylvania, and my grandparents and aunt and uncle live outside of Pittsburgh. Growing up, we used to be huge Pirates fans. That's when the Pirates were really good. Despite becoming quite the Orioles fan since moving to Baltimore, I still like to go see the Pirates every couple years when they come to town for inter-league play.

I decided to take my nice camera along with me with the hopes of also catching some shots of the tall ships that are currently in the Inner Harbor (more to come on that later). I'm glad I did because it was also the first time that I was able to get some decent shots of Oriole Park and Camden Yards in the five years we've lived here. Last night was a beautiful night for baseball, and having camera in hand it was kind of fun to be a tourist in my own city and check out some things in Camden Yards that I often overlook.

We were able to snag a seat at the bar along the centerfield wall during the Pirates' batting practice.
Got to watch Tommy Hunter and Matt Wieters warm up in the outfield and in the bullpen.
Got to see Andrew McCutchen and Adam Jones in action in centerfield.
 Witnessed a home run and watched the bullpen round up for a cheer afterward.
Enjoyed views of the stadium.
Spotted the marker for a Jim Thome home run on Eutaw Street and admired the new Frank Robinson statue.
And of course also enjoyed the game.
We spend quite a bit of time here in the summer and this was truly the perfect start to summer vacation. Camden Yards is quite possibly one of the nicest ballparks in the country and if you ever have a chance to visit, I highly recommend you take advantage and catch a game! Do you have a ballpark you visit often?

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Personal Air Show

Heidi Shenk "Baltimore"

My first day of summer vacation was getting off to a slow and lazy start. A two hour sleep in was followed by iced coffee on the patio. I was catching up on some of my favorite blogs, thinking about what my first summer vacation blog post should be about, and then this happened:

Yes, literally a loud rumbling throughout the house was enough to get me to hop out of my chair, set down my coffee, and run to the roof deck just in time to see a Blue Angel pass directly over me at probably only a mere 100-200 feet overhead. I raced back down two flights of stairs, grabbed my camera and enjoyed the show for the next hour.

Unfortunately, none of the planes got as close as the first one I glimpsed, but they were still flying by at a very close distance. So close that if you look hard enough, you can make out the pilot's helmet!

It's not every day that you get to see a full formation Blue Angels flyover from your roof top deck. What is the reason for all of this? This week just happens to be the "Sailabration" for the War of 1812 Bicentennial. As part of the celebration, there will be an full air show this weekend (yes, more rumbling overhead for us all weekend long) and a fleet of tall ships also arrived along the harbor yesterday. I'm not one to be very patriotic, but I am a bit of a history nerd (no wonder one of the classes I teach is U.S. History) so this is all pretty exciting. A pretty neat start to summer vacation, wouldn't you say?

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Hey Hon

Heidi Shenk "Baltimore"

It is festival season here in Baltimore. Once summer temperatures begin to make their way into the scene, it seems there is a festival every weekend. This past weekend was no exception. The Hampden neighborhood played host to the annual HonFest. HonFest is an ode to the Baltimore Hon along with beehives, cat-eyed glasses, flamingos, and plenty of pink. Each year there is a Hon contest in which Miss Hon is crowned.

After last year's tainted festival due to controversy in the festival organizer's trademark of the term "Hon," we just couldn't quite make ourselves go to the festival. It just didn't seem right somehow. But after the organizer's restaurant, Cafe Hon, began doing so badly that she turned to Kitchen Nightmare's Gordon Ramsey, she finally gave up the trademark and apologized. Thus, much of Baltimore felt they could once again celebrate HonFest in true fashion. And it was pretty fabulous, hon.

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